Linux newbie + old laptop + VM + performance = ?

By superty12
Sep 1, 2011
Post New Reply
  1. superty12

    superty12 TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 432

    Yes, I have tried booting.
  2. tehbanz

    tehbanz TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 183   +10

    Look into using "PloP" boot manager (Really easy to boot from it) it's a "live CD" that allows you to boot from USB even if it's not an option in your bios. then use "UnetBootin" to "BURN" the .iso to a USB flash. it's worked for me numerous times.

    Ill update with more info when i get home if needed. posting from work atm.

    **windows instructions**
    Edit:: for Distro why not give "Antix" a try, it's meant for older PC's and just installed it myself on some P3's yesterday Using the above boot method (boot to USB wasn't an option in the bios)

    So what i did was burn the PloP .iso to a disc using imgburn
    Then prepared my USB thumb drive, downloaded the Antix .iso from their website.
    Opened UNetBootin, Chose the ISO radio button and pointed it to my downloaded iso.
    Then Verified UnetBootin had the right thumb drive letter.
    Click Go and wait for it to finish.
    **unetbootin says you need to reboot, that's only if you're installing the *.iso on the host machine, if it's intended for another machine just unplug your drive**

    Boot to the fresh burned disc (it's under 1.44 MB so even if your CD burner might be dying this should burn in enough time to hopefully not trigger the problem) **Also PloP can go on a floppy if your laptop & PC have a floppy drive (unlikely, i know)**
    PloP boots, it's got cool space graphics and then lists all bootable options.
    Choose USB. it scans all USB ports to find a USB drive with bootable properties, finds your antix thumb drive and boots to it.
    Then Choose "Boot Antix" (this blue screen is what Unetbootin does, chose whatever option you want. CLI install is more for advanced users though)
    When you're in the Live Antix environment there's an install option.

    Antix is pretty sweet. it's got the icewm desktop, extremely close to like win 98. runs very well on these old P3's. my boss wanted me to load lightweight linux on them to donate to a daycare. Gonna load all the educational software I can find on it now! hopefully it inspires another little geek to the linux side.


    PloP: http://www.plop.at/en/bootmanager.html
    UnetBootin: http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/
  3. superty12

    superty12 TechSpot Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 432

    Sorry it took so long to get back to you. It is (sort of) solved! I was using Windows and the battery ran out on me. If I do find the cord, I'll probably just wait for a more powerful laptop. Thank you, all.
  4. mike1959

    mike1959 TechSpot Addict Posts: 1,033   +15

    Running openSUSE 12.1 right now, here on an old Asrock motherboard, P4 2.8, 1.5GB DDR, GeForce 2/ 400 AGP 64 MB (yes, it still works.)
    The discs were included with Linux user mag, 2 distros, Fedora 16 & OpenSUSE 12.1. The install procedure has been changed, now no need to run the live disc then choose install from the desktop, now it's possible to choose 'install' right from the start. Time is much reduced, all up and running in Firefox 7 in about 20 mins.
    But I found the boot time from power on, is much longer, around 3.5 mins, compared to Linux Mint 11, of about 2 mins.
    But cannot complain, about the O/S, it's all running without fault.
    ( I can't download the distros 'cos of my download limit, the magazine is £6 but I will buy about 3 a year, worth it to me.)
  5. It's nothing new, there are livecds and install cds for some distros - what you received with the magazine were install cds.

    That seems a long time. Different distros differ however. I find that Slackware takes quite a time to boot compared to other distros, though once the system is up, it's fast and responsive (the slower boot time is because Slackware uses a different (BSD style) init process) so you can't really fault it. Debian boots up very fast for me (about 20 seconds). There has been a lot of work on boot times in the last few years, some distros have got on board with that, others haven't, 'buntu have their own boot process. Historically with Linux, boot times have never been an area of focus, as unlike some operating systems, Linux is designed to boot up and stay up. The short version is that you shouldn't worry about boot times in GNU/Linux systems nor interpret them in any way as a guage of system performance.
  6. mike1959

    mike1959 TechSpot Addict Posts: 1,033   +15

    Hi. Sorry about the long delay in replying. Still using 'Mint', still takes about 2 1/2 mins to boot, but it's solid, never lets me down.
    It's taken some time to learn image editing with 'Gimp'. I do a fair amount of photo editing, and often need to upload optimised photo's to helpline/forum sites. All works well though, and I am surprised how often I boot the Linux PC instead of the Windows one. As a very long time user of every version of Windows from 3.1 on, I am finding Linux does all I need ! I thought it was too much to start to learn a new system, but 'all good' so far. Looking forward to the next revision of 'Mint'.
  7. Leeky

    Leeky TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,378   +98

    Aye, once you get started it works out pretty easy really. Linux is mostly mature enough these days for most usage, just gamers that aren't as well covered for the moment.

    If I didn't game I wouldn't have any need for Windows at all.

    Gimp is also available for Windows as well, should you *need* to use it in Windows for any reason.


Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...


Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.